Quick, Amanda. The Mystery Woman. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2013. ISBN-13: 978-0-399-15909-1. Hardcover List Price: $26.95. Paperback List Price: $7.99
This book lacked some of the magic that made the first book in this duology, Crystal Gardens, work. The book seemed to drag, especially at around the 75% mark. I had a hard time caring for either of the main characters, or even any of the supporting characters, because while they did not possess any truly objectionable qualities, there was nothing about them that made me think them memorable or sympathetic in any way.
The mystery of what was going on with the murders was what kept me semi-invested, but after the revelation regarding Josh’s sometimes- employer, my investment in the story started to wane. The romance was decent, but given that I had no interest in either Josh or Beatrice, I was not impressed.
Something else I found weird was the fact that the text would go from referring to the Flint and Marsh proprietors as Mrs. Flint and Mrs. Marsh, and their first names, Abigail and Sara, without explaining who was who until several chapters later, when a chapter from Josh’s perspective refers to Mrs. Flint as “Abigail Flint.” I understand that sometimes different characters would refer to people differently, based on how well they know them, but I was so confused trying to figure out which woman was which.